[Question] For those who advocate Anki

I just read the start of TurnTrout’s Lessons from his self-teaching efforts and his mention of Anki made me wonder about something.

Spaced repetition is a bit of a take away from real life experience. Typically we don’t use everything we’re learned every day, we get a form a natural spaced repetition (albeit somewhat biased in what is repeated by our own lives).

I’ve been (perhaps more pretending here) studying Korean for a while but in many ways not really accomplishing much. I’ve got a very limited vocabulary that I can recall in a “study” type setting (flash cards, reading the specific lesson dialogue...), understand common verb conjugation, various particle markers the language uses, know the character set and okay at making the right sound. But suggesting I have anything related to a working command of the language is a rather humorous fantasy in my view.

One challenge I have is I really don’t know any Koreans so opportunities to practice in real life settings are very limited. I’ve decided that I will start using some of the online tutors to start making my self actualy use and so start really thinking and developing the “muscle” memory rather than just study, repeat saying, flashcards, online audio or Korean language shows.

Does anyone think that Anki is better than real life use for learning? Or is it perhaps more of a (possibly imperfect) substitute for when one cannot avail themself of a real life usage setting to apply what they have learned?